28 Apr Dr Ann Budge helps launch £100m investment campaign

A CAMPAIGN to raise £100m will be launched by Edinburgh Napier University today with the help of Hearts owner, Dr Ann Budge.

The Transforming Tomorrow, Together campaign aims to attract funding to build on the University’s research strengths, nurture and support student talent, and improve facilities on campus.

Dr Budge, whose leadership has transformed the fortunes of the Tynecastle side, joined Edinburgh Napier Principal, Professor Andrea Nolan, and students to kick-start the campaign at the University’s Craiglockhart Campus.

Professor Nolan, who will lead the campaign alongside campaign chairman, Sir Andrew Cubie, said the University was “aiming high”.

She said: “Edinburgh Napier has come a long way in a short time, and we are very proud of our achievements over the last five decades.

“Today we drive economic, social and cultural development in Scotland and beyond, but we want to do more, which is why we’ve launched a campaign to raise £100m by 2020.”

The funding drive has received an early £1m boost from prominent Hong Kong businessman Peter K.K. Lee, with the cash going towards student scholarships, mobility grants and PhD studentships.

Dr Budge, who grew up in the capital’s Drylaw area, sits on the University’s investment campaign board and previously set up an Edinburgh Napier bursary in her parents’ name for hard-up Edinburgh students.

She said: “Setting up the Esther James Bursary enabled to me to acknowledge the transformative impact a university education has had on my life.

“My family ensured that financial hardship was not a barrier to my education, and I’m proud to support Edinburgh Napier today.”

Other Edinburgh Napier alumni and honorary graduates, including rugby legend Chris Paterson and BBC weather presenter Carol Kirkwood, have also backed the campaign.

Professor Nolan said investing in the University would have an impact “for generations to come”

She added: “Our graduates are highly valued by employers and our research is having impact on lives and communities locally and internationally.  We are ambitious – for our students, our staff and the communities we serve here in Scotland and abroad.”

Former Scotland rugby star Chris Paterson said: “I am delighted to see such an ambitious organisation launching a project like the investment campaign. I really hope it comes out on top.

“So many areas of the university will benefit in the long-term so let’s hope it goes well. I am sure it will. Good luck to everyone at Edinburgh Napier.”

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